The Bakeneko: A Lawson Vampire Short Story by Jon F. Merz – Part Ten

The Bakeneko: A Lawson Vampire Short Story
By Jon F. Merz

Part Ten

 
“My name is Lawson,” I said.
 
She looked me up and down and then drew herself up to her full height with a deep inhale. “I am Kiyoko Mononobe.”
 
Something about that name made me wonder if she had royalty in her bloodline. I could see the pride with which she spoke. I wracked my brain and spoke it before I even realized I’d remembered it. “Mononobe no Moriya.”
 
Kiyoko’s eyes went as wide as basketballs. “How do you know that name?”
 
I smiled. “I make a point to study history.”
 
She grunted again. “The name of my ancestors is not known much these days. The youth of this nation have forgotten. Despite my family’s connection to Emperor Jimmu. None of that seems to matter much anymore.”
 
“Your family would be proud to know that you still carry on their name.”
 
“I am the last of them,” said Kiyoko. “There are none after me. My family name dies with me when I am finally blessed to depart this land.”
 
“You sound like you’re ready to go.”
 
“I’ve been ready for a long time,” said Kiyoko. “But you didn’t come here to listen to an old woman complain about her life. You said something about the deaths.”
 
“Yes. I did.” I paused. “I heard a rumor that you reported seeing some sort of animal. I’d like to ask you about that.”
 
Her eyes narrowed. “I did see an animal. A large cat.”
 
“Not a dog?”
 
“Dogs leave claw marks,” said Kiyoko. “I’ve lived in these mountains my entire life. I know the tracks that a dog makes. This wasn’t a dog.”
 
“And when did you find tracks?”
 
“Couple days back, but the rains a day ago washed them away. They were big though. I followed them for a while. But there’s only so far I can go given my age. I’m not as spry as I used to be when it comes to climbing the mountains.”
 
“You seem to be doing pretty well,” I said with a smile.
 
“I can get around all right. But not beyond the village.”
 
“And you said you saw a cat?”
 
“Big one,” said Kiyoko. “But I’m not surprised. Cats have always been mysterious things in my culture.”
 
©2019 All rights reserved
 

The Blog Relaunches!

Well, it’s been a couple of years since I posted out here in my blog, but I’m bringing it back. Given how restrictive Facebook and its algorithms have become in what they show to people who happen to like my page, or interact with me, the importance of this website has skyrocketed. From now on, lengthy posts will be published here and then shared elsewhere on social media.

What’s new? Take a look at everything happening right now…

1. DEAD DROP PODCAST: I started this podcast two weeks ago and I’m loving it. It’s a weekly update show, so to speak, about everything and anything that is happening in my professional life. I talk primarily about my acting, writing, and producing (see below) and share anecdotes and stories that I hope will help those who may be curious about any of those three topics. You can listen to the podcast on 7 platforms right now including Spotify and Google. Check out the homepage for the podcast here: http://anchor.fm and if you like it, become a supporter so I can make more episodes!

2. PATREON PAGE: I held out actually doing this but then Patreon decided to change rates and their processing so I had a deadline and launched it. It’s a cool way for me to share things that don’t normally get shared with people who want to support me, offer rewards, and more. If you’re a fan of my writing and my other work, swing by and think about becoming a supporter.

3. PAPERBACKS! Yes, I am finally getting Lawson into paperback! It’s been a long time coming but the new paperbacks are pretty gorgeous. I’m working to get them all available for sale, but the first ten adventures currently are, so grab them. Also, I will begin selling autographed versions through this website very soon (like, probably this week.)

4. POUNDCAKE: This is the new production company I’ve launched with my friends Branden James Maxham and Christopher Grace. They’re both incredibly talented individuals and I’m thrilled to be working with them. If you haven’t seen the official website then check it out here: http://poundcakeyum.com and be sure to follow us on Instagram as well @poundcakeyum There are a ton of cool projects being developed as we speak!

5. PINTEREST: Still figuring this platform out, but there ya go. I’m over there, so if you are, too, come by and give us a follow.

6. MERZENARIES: The forum here on this website is going to be a lot more active, so if you’ve ever bought anything here on the site, you’re automatically registered, just log in normally and you’re all set. And if you haven’t yet bought anything, register for the forum and you’ll be able to shop later when I open up the new autographed paperback section.

7. MOI: This is the name of the new non-fiction book I’m working hard to finish in time for the Fall. It’s filled with a whole lot of…well, let’s just say “unorthodox” information that a lot of folks might really dig being exposed to. Keep an eye out for updates. And I’m releasing some of it over on my Patreon page exclusively for supporters.

Remember: to get the latest news, get the DEAD DROP podcast!

THE CRUCIBLE is here!

The Crucible Book Cover Hi-ResIt’s been a long time coming…

But the newest Lawson Vampire novel, THE CRUCIBLE, is finally here and EXCLUSIVELY at my new secure website. This is the ONLY place to get the book and you can pay using either a credit card or PayPal.

PLEASE NOTE: The lines where you enter your credit card information (number, expiration date, CC code, etc.) are too small to see what you’re typing, but they DO WORK (I’ve tested them). I’m trying to get that issue sorted right now. Also, once you pay, the CONFIRMATION PAGE will show three file types IN RED that you can download: .mobi for the Kindle, .epub for the Nook and other e-readers, and .pdf for printing or desktop reading.

I hope you all enjoy the latest Lawson adventure! Click on this link to go buy it! https://jonfmerz.net/product/the-crucible-a-lawson-vampire-novel/

Talya’s gone.

Kidnapped by the infamous Xuan Xiang, a former Fixer who has sold out to the Communist Chinese, in a bid to lure Lawson to a final climactic battle where only one Fixer walks away.

But Lawson doesn’t play by the rules. And rather than walk into an ambush, Lawson sets his own plan into motion to rescue the woman he loves. Aided by Jack, the recently-graduated Invoker, they launch their rescue operation, unsanctioned by the Council and thousands of miles from any sort of ally or help.

Deep in western China, Lawson and Jack uncover far more than they expected. And it’s going to take all of their skills combined to ensure their own survival and that of Talya.

Click on this link to go buy it! https://jonfmerz.net/product/the-crucible-a-lawson-vampire-novel/

GHOST IN THE MACHINE: A FREE Lawson Vampire Story by Jon F. Merz

Yesterday was my birthday and to celebrate, I’m giving away a brand NEW Lawson Vampire story called GHOST IN THE MACHINE. It’s absolutely FREE for a limited time so grab your copy below in one of three file formats: .pdf, .epub, or .mobi

In this story, it’s 1992 and Lawson owes a friend a favor. It sounds simple enough, but nothing ever is for Lawson. The story runs 7700+ words and will hopefully tide all you Lawson fans over until the release of the next Lawson novel, THE CRUCIBLE.

Have at it & thanks again for being such awesome fans!

-Jon

GHOST IN THE MACHINE PDF FILE (right click “save as”)

GHOST IN THE MACHINE EPUB FILE (right click “save as”)

GHOST IN THE MACHINE MOBI FILE (right click “save as”)

Halloween Thriller Storybundle Featuring Ten Awesome EBooks!

If you missed my newsletter earlier today (whaaaaat???) then you haven’t heard the news that I am part of the latest Storybundle featuring ten amazing novels from some truly incredible authors. My buddy Joe Nassise and I have the novel we co-wrote THE CERBERUS PROTOCOL included in the lineup. Storybundle is great for a number of reasons:

  • Pay what you want: you can decide how much to pay for the bundle – and each one has a recommended price that gives the authors a very fair share.
  • 10% of the money earned by the bundle goes to charity: For this bundle two amazing charities are the beneficiaries.
  • The ebooks in the bundle are compatible with any e-reader or smartphone: Whatever you’ve got, the bundle works with it.
  • This is a direct-to-reader exchange: No 3rd parties involved here. We wrote these fun books and you get them direct from us in one great package.
  • All of the authors are professional storytellers: you don’t have to worry about crap reads or slipshod plotting. We know what we’re doing and how to deliver thrills a-plenty.
  • You can get the bundle right now by clicking here!

Here’s the amazing lineup:

1. THE CERBERUS PROTOCOL by Joseph Nassise and Jon F. Merz (heyyyy, I know that guy)
2. OGMIOS OMNIBUS by Steven Savile (a massive collection of three novels in this thrilling series)
3. FIRST DROP by Zoe Sharp
4. PROJECT NEMESIS by Jeremy Robinson
5. NEVERMORE by David Niall Wilson
6. BLACK by Russell Blake
7. BODY BAGS by Christopher Golden
8. LOCK & LOAD by Sean Black

Here are the covers:

And the charities being benefitted are as follows (info taken from the Storybundle website)

“Distinguished as one of the top 15 after-school arts and culture programs in the nation by The President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, Girls Write Now is New York’s first and only organization with a writing and mentoring model exclusively for girls. From young women exploring writing to seasoned professionals practicing their craft every day, GWN is a community of women writers dedicated to providing guidance, support, and opportunities for high school girls to develop their creative, independent voices and write their way to a better future. Over the past 15 years, more than 4,500 underserved teen girls have benefitted from the GWN community and 100% of seniors in our flagship mentoring program go on to college—bringing with them portfolios, awards, scholarships, new skills, and a sense of confidence. Girls Write Now has built a record of achievement and innovation recognized twice by the White House, by The New York Times, and the MacArthur Foundation, and evidenced by the hundreds of Scholastic Art & Writing awards our girls have earned.

Mighty Writers’ mission is to teach Philadelphia kids to think and write with clarity. Our free programs combat the literacy crisis in a city where nearly half of high school students drop out and some 50% of working-age adults are functionally illiterate (can’t read bank statements, fill out job applications or easily comprehend news articles). Today, Mighty Writers offers year-round writing programs for some 1,000 kids and teens, ages seven to 17, with help from 300 volunteers. At our headquarters in one of Philadelphia’s historic neighborhoods, we offer an afterschool writing academy, themed writing workshops, one-on-one mentorships, a weekly teen lounge, SAT preparatory courses and college essay writing classes. Our programs draw students from more than 125 city schools (public, parochial, magnet, charter, cyber, home) and an array of communities.”

Seriously, how cool is this bundle? Not only do you get a wide array of thrilling reads perfect for the spooky Halloween season, but you also get a chance to help out some truly deserving folks.

Grab your bundle now by going here!